The March 2023 edit

Oh wow, March turned out to be a month of highs and lows at Get Pickled HQ!

First of all, I am sorry for once again being so late with my updates – March turned out to be a very tricky month at Get Pickled HQ, for sure . . .

I was absolutely blown away by the magic that the Ladies Who Ferment and myself conjured for our koji workshop. We explored all the umami potential of this amazing fungus, created some phenomenal food and shared the love of all things koji.

Then, after a very cold Frome Independent, your girl here fell very ill – proper proper, as I turned out to have chickenpox! Never having had it as a child, I was always very wary of getting it – I had heard it was terrible as an adult. And, trust me, I found out this was true!

I had to stop in my tracks and give myself some proper R&R. There was less cooking great meals and getting lost in production . . . and more watching very easy telly and getting some favourite books out.

As the absolute worst subsided, I was able to get on with some work, only for my boy to become ill . . . What a month!

I am looking forward to this new season. I think after a very busy winter I was forced into some proper rest and introspection, which would be part of our ancestral cycle of the seasons. By ignoring it, I ended up crashing and burning. But now I can see that it was a chance to really take some time to rebuild my strength and get ready for the renewal cycle brought by spring.

And with this month’s horribilis behind me, I am happy to share with you that we are back with a bang. We will be doing the Frome Independent at our usual spot, on the first Sunday of the month. You will also find us at the Farmers’ Market at Boyles Cross in Frome, on the second Saturday of the month, with some one-off seasonal batches – this is our package- free service, so bring your clean jars.

I was glad that we were all back on track in time to host a number of workshops last week. We had a private event followed by a Masterclass and An Intro to Fermented Vegetables, both sold out!

I have been so humbled by the amazing feedback I have been getting . . . I can see I am truly following my calling in sharing my love of the microbial world and my commitment to a better food system too.

I have also been surprised how I have rekindled my love of fermented drinks. Many moons ago, water kefir was my first fermented love and the one that started it all. A friend of mine brought me some of hers, and I WAS OBSESSED! I got her to teach me how to do it, and she also recommended that I buy Sandor Katz’s Wild Fermentation – well, the rest in history. I fell out of love with it for a while, as fermented drinks demand a whole lot of maintenance and life just got on the way at that point (work, marriage and kids . . .).

But I have been tempted recently to go back to experimenting with wild sodas. I started with spruce needles from the Christmas tree and raspberries. Wow – what a revelation. Since then, I have got into ginger ale and tepache, to name just a few. I have been so happy with it that I have been teaching it in my Masterclasses and I am considering doing a class just on them. Would you be interested?

I am happy to share with you all the dates we have planned for spring and summer. And, as a thank you for your support, I am happy to give you an early bird discount too

As a lot of you know, I truly believe in keeping seasonal, so I will be exploring what all the seasons have to offer now.

I have been invited to teach elsewhere, so I will be running some workshops in Newbury and Wells too, in June and July.
I hope I get to see you soon, come and say hi at a market or join us for an event.


This month I…

This month I have been confined to my house trying to get over the dreaded chicken pox. So instead of sharing the stuff I did out and about, I am sharing the things that helped me to keep sane:

  1.  I embraced the joys of oat baths for itchy chicken pox skin
  2. I re-read Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins – a great book – and then binged on the series. . .
  3. I discovered Shrinking on Apple TV, not as hyped as Ted Lasso, but as soothing for my soul as the porridge bath was for my skin
  4. I finally started doing cold showers, which helped with the itchiness – and now I am strangely addicted to them
  5. I stayed up all night reading Still Life by Sarah Winman – a mug of hot cocoa for the heart.

I cooked

Considering I was ill, I was very happy to subsist on fruit and milk kefir, but I did get to cook come nice food for my workshops once I was feeling better, such as my famous seed crackers. I also prepared:

  1. Ground elder chimichurri
  2. Cashew miso cheese
  3. Amazake ginger pudding
  4. Fermented limes and coriander hummus
  5. Miso banana bread (recipe here)